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Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a '98 Vortec 350

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by KRAZIE87K5, Apr 24, 2003.

  1. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    I'm picking up the complete deal on the 3rd of May. I found a pretty good deal on a complete engine... Now here come the questions:

    I need to know what I will need to do to get the 465 on the 350. I need a flywheel, clutch and pressue plate to fit the SM465 onto the back of the vortec...

    Question #1 - What do I need to buy to do this? I am clueless even to what size flywheel sits behind the vortec... I know the bellhousings will match, but I have no idea what flywheel or clutch to purchase.

    Question #2 - How can I remove the auto tranny from the VCM program? I've heard this will be a big problem... It had a 4WD 4L80 originally that I decided NOT to purchase, as they wanted $850 for it!!! What else needs to be programmed out of the engine? EGR?, and why? /forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif

    Question #3 - Exhaust. I found a local shop to build me a complete system for $400, including the y-pipe, cat, both O2s, and the tail pipe all the way out to the end of the truck. Did I forget something there? They said to use 2.5" pipe after the y-pipe. Is that sufficient?

    Question #4 - What am I missing?

    I've got a little over a month to finish this project... I need all the help I can find and ASAP. For those folks that noticed my LT1 post... I've decided against it. It sounds like too much hastle, mostly due to the opti-crap distributor.

    Thanks again...
     
  2. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    What am I missing Dan? I thought you had a healthy big block with FI...why go through all the trouble and expense to swap in a small block now?

    Rene
     
  3. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Guessing you'll need to have the PCM changed. IIRC, with auto trans you have a PCM, manual trans has an ECM.

    Was VATS still around in the Vortec setups? You are going to need the wiring manual for that year Vortec for sure. Guessing you got ALL the wiring, uncut? /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

    Flywheel shouldn't be an issue at all. Any one piece rear main flywheel SHOULD work to mate the 465 to Vortec crank, since the one piece flywheel is already present, and 465's were available with one piece rear main motors obviously.
     
  4. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    I've almost completed the install of an 99 5.7/4l60e into my 87 Jimmy and can help out.

    1st don't reporgram anything, way too explensive(400-600 hundred). You need to get ride of VATS and the auto tranny and can do this by purchasing a 96 VCM thats for the 5.7 w/ manual but you have to repin the computer connectors. I paid $85 for a 5.7 w/4l60e VCM and spend 1hr repining the connector. I am keeping all the emission stuff working.

    400s pretty cheap but to be emission legal you need to run 2 cats and all 4 o2 sensors. If you go the re-programing route you might be able to do 1 cat. I paid 700 for dual exhaust with 4 o2's sensor, 2 high flow cats and 2 50 series flows. If going single exhaust I would suggest 3inch, I'm running dual 2.25.

    If you do it within a month YOU DA MAN!!!! But I have spent alot of time figuring out the best/economical way to finsh it and don't mind passing it on. I also only get to work on it occasionally b/c I've been working alot lately.

    Other issues.
    You have an 86 so you will need a return fuel line.
    Use an external fuel pump or get a tank and sending unit from a 87-91 and use a 96-98 2 door tahoe pump.
    Need Vss sensor, you can get a speedo cable one that will work well enough with the manual. If you do go auto you need and transmission shaft mount sensor.
    Mount the computer/underhood fuse box.
    Build some type of intake, use a K&N 3.5 inch cone filter.
    You can use a stock 96-98 accel cable with a little modification.
    Use the stock 96-98 upper rad hose(Bent a little) and a 86 lower.
    Wire up the main battery cables.
    Splice in the truck wiring to the engine wiring. There are some tricks to this but you only need to connect 3 wires to start it and about 10 to get everthing working.

    I think thats it. Let me know if you have any questions.

    Mike
     
  5. K5DRAGER

    K5DRAGER 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    If you do need a tank with a intank fuel pump and return provision I might know someone who has a good one in a 91 thats for sale. /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  6. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    [ QUOTE ]
    Let me know if you have any questions.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Mike-

    I have a feeling you and I will get to be good buds by the end of this! /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif I am sure that I will have MANY questions... One I can think of off the top is, what 10 wires need to be connected back into the stock wiring to get "everything working"???

    On the O2 sensors... should I just have the 2 after the cat, or am I getting into trouble? Do they really make a difference?

    What did you do for the vapor canister? I was really thinking of having that taken out of the picture...

    One thing I will HAVE to reprogram for is the 4L80 that used to be behind this engine. I plan to run a SM465/205. Another is the VATS. All this I can have done for $150 @ http://www.eperfpro.com. I talked to Tony there.

    I am keeping the EGR.

    $700 for exhaust? DAMNIT! Thats a boatload! I barely paid that much for the whole damn engine, ecm, harness and all!

    What did I miss? Thanks for everything thus far... I am glad I am not the only guy out there doing this! /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif

    -Dan
     
  7. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    [ QUOTE ]
    If you do need a tank with a intank fuel pump and return provision I might know someone who has a good one in a 91 thats for sale. /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    How much are "they" looking for?

    -Dan
     
  8. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Here is the deal. I made the leap to EFI on the 454. After 4 months of trying to work the bugs out of it, I am giving up on it. I can't figure out what it is. This solution is supposed to be easier, but I have a sneaking suspision that it may not be. Regardless, it certainly has a certain "coolness" factor.

    -Dan
     
  9. K5DRAGER

    K5DRAGER 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Pm'ed ya.
     
  10. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Dan,
    I can get you copies of the wiring, I found the vortec info online and I had the truck wiring diagram. It amazing that some of the wire colors are still that same between years!

    For the o2 system it all depends on the emission laws in your area. If you don't need them then you can take them out. Stock has 4 O2s 1 in each manifold and one behind each cat. How much programing is Tony willing to do for $150? Everybody I talk to just gave me the flat price 400 no matter how many modifications you make. You can have the rear two O2s sensors programmed out, same thing with the evap canister. Unfortunitly I live in phx and it all has to be there. The evap canister is not hard to put on. I mounted my new one exactly where the old one sits.

    If you get a VCM from a 96 with a standard tranny it will work with your sm465/205. I use the 96 VCM b/c it was the cheapest and if anything ever happens to the computer(I have a rep of drownding vehicles) you just go get another stock 96 computer and don't have to mess with re-programming it.

    Exhaust, ya it wasn't cheap but figure the 2 cats and 2 mufflers are probably 400 alone. I know 2 guys worked on it for 4-5 hours also. I got lucky and it was slow day and they took there time and did a great job.

    For the gas tank, the reason you want the 87-91 tank is that it's baffled. If you use an older tank you might have stalling problems when you get down to 1/4 tank or less. If you wanted to up grade to this latter you can use the stock tank and just plumb the return into the filler hose.

    Trust me the are a few things you missed but I'll save those for another post. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    Just as note I paid 1700 for the engine/tranny and t-case that only have 18k on them. I probably have spent that again with everything else to get it running and no it not running yet. It's is really close and I might be able to start it this weekend if I get a chance to work on it. I think I've spent all the money I need to.

    I glad I'm not the only one who thinks this is a good idea. /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
    Mike
     
  11. JAXSTER

    JAXSTER 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    I just finished a TPI comversion on a vortec in my 85 and found a guy very resonable on PROM programing! turn off the VATS and The TCC and you
    Go to www.chevythunder.com he does TPI and TBI Harness are most reasonable in THE US starting on mu second one. /forums/images/graemlins/burb.gif
     
  12. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Mike, a couple of questions on this swap, that may help out overall...

    Assuming the '96+ has AIR, does the ECM monitor the condition of the AIR divert and EVAP?

    More curious than anything, on the '88 TPI I'm working on, it's a simple divert/no divert, no codes set if those components are "not present" with no PROM changes, but I'm guessing the '96 is OBDII, and those systems are "monitored" that they are functioning correctly?

    Is the difference in the "computer" the fact that the 4L trannies use the computer to control every facet of the transmission, while the manual tranny computer doesn't have any of that?
     
  13. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    The 96+ have air, I don't believe its anything more fancy then an on/off diverter valve switch. I think that there are no sensors for this system and it probably not set a code if it was disconnected. I not total sure b/c I plan on running it in the stock configuration and don't need to modify it. Problems come into play with emission tests. Without the air injection you can pass a static (idle) test but you'll probably fail the dynamic protion. Very few cities have the dynamic test but lucky me Phoenix is one of them.

    The TPI computer and the Vortec computer are two entirely different beasts. It would be like comparing 286 desktop computer to a pentium. Because the computer is more powerfull GM used it to control more things like the
    tranny.

    Mike
     
  14. jarheadk5

    jarheadk5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    SWEET!! I've been kicking this same idea idea around for a little while; this info really helps me out for planning. Any chance you can pull all your info, tips, tricks, etc. for this swap together at some point in the near future and do a writeup for the "Advanced Previews" section??
    BTW, I realize the significance of that question; believe me, I'm intimately familiar with the time limitations of the standard 24-hr day...
     
  15. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    If Mike doesn't have time to do the write up, he can pass his info to me, and I will complete the write up for everyone. I am getting the motor sometime next week, and need to get started on it ASAP. So far, it doesn't sound real hard if you have a good donor vehicle.

    Thanks again Mike!

    -Dan
     
  16. marine_enlisted

    marine_enlisted 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    I am running a Vortec in my '86. I completed the swap about 6 months ago. I have been driving it in the DC area traffic every day and have had zero drivability problems whatsoever. It is by far the best mod I have ever done to a vehicle.
    I didn't have a garage or a lot of time when I did the swap so I wimped out and had a stand alone harness built for mine to save time. I also had them program my computer for me. My computer came out of a 96 s-10. ($50.00 from a salvage yard)
    I had them program it for a 5.7l of course, They reprogrammed it as a manual trans since I have a 700r4. They disabled the evap system , and added a little different fuel map and timing curve and took away the rev limiter. The programming cost me $225.00. I did away with the rear o2's by plugging simulators into the harness in their place. They make the computer think that everything is perfect as far as emissions so it doesn't start making adjustments to compensate. They cost about $80.00. I had all this done at www.speedscenewiring.com . I bought a y-pipe from a 98 Tahoe and gave it to my exhaust guy to take what he needed from it. He hacked it up and now I have true dual exhaust with one O2 in each side and one cat on each side using 2 1/4" pipe. I would suggest using the fuel lines from a Vortec truck. The pressure will reach 60+psi so try to avoid using rubber fuel injection hose if at all possible. I got the lines from a '96 extended cab truck so I had plenty of length to play with. I bought an 87 tank for the baffles. Using the 87 sender I just replaced the pump with one from a Vortec truck. I think I had to do a small bit of filing to the plastic in the bottom of the pump, but I fits right in the 87 sending unit, plus this already has the return line fitting on it. Also, I wouldn't suggest plumbing a return into the filler neck. I mentioned this to a tech at fuel injection specialties and he said it can create a potential for build up of static electricity, and causes a lot of splashing in the tank. I tried an in line pump at first, I mounted it to the frame using rubber iso-mounts and that thing was still so loud I could hear it while doing 70MPH on the interstate. If you have to use an in-line pump you can get one from BTB products, they put these engines in Landcriusers for about $25,000 a pop. The in tank is much, much better though. I used all the front accessories from the Vortec. The power steering hoses threaded right in, oil cooler lines fit, I used a Vortec upper rad. hose and an '86 lower. I made a bracket and attached my T.V. cable to the cruise stud on the throttle lever. I used a '96 throttle cable. $25 from Chevy Dealer. I had to use a wire nut at the pedal end to get it adjusted right. Also you will have to shave off a little raised portion where the cable latches into the firewall to get it to snap in. The only things I still don't have hooked up are the ac hoses, and the cruise. The Vortec throttle pulls from the other direction so I need to make a bracket to mount the cruise actuator on the front, or use a long cable. I have been told that some Camaros used a cable with the cruise actuator mounted on the drivers side inner fender , This may be a solution .As far as the ac hoses I have the original Vortec hoses. The high side hose can be tweaked to fit onto the condensor, but the fittings are a little different thread. Hopefully I can use some sort of compression union to make that work. For the low side I will probably just cut and splice using good a/c clamps. I mounted my computer to my drivers side fender right behind the radiator support and as close to the top as I could get it , with the connectors facing straight down. This is probably the driest spot and it looks like it was put there from the factory.
    The things I like about this swap are: looks way cool, nore more loud grinding starter(gear reduction), no more angry cricket sounds from the power steering when turned to the stops, very reliable, snappy throttle response, good low end for a small block, and since no one else except an elite few of us /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif, have attempted the swap there are tons of Vortec parts for cheap on ebay because of the guys who buy 'em and slap a carb on 'em. Also now I can put remote start on it for cold winter and hot summer days(fix a/c first) . Also... SUPERCHARGER!!! Someday I hope to find a good deal on a 4l60e and will wire that up. If you have any ideas on how to make the cruise/ or a/c work please let me know and any questions you have I'll do my best to answer. Mike /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif
     
  17. BigJohnson

    BigJohnson 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    So the tbi didn't work out? Could you not get it tuned or what? You have me worried now. I have about half the pieces to put Vortec injection on my Blazer but decided to go with a TBI setup. Didn't you have the tbi kit from CustomEFIS? I considered on of his setups. I am just curious to know what you didn't like about the tbi. This post has me fired up...I may have to stick with the Vortec. Anyway, here is a site with some pretty good info on the vortec swap http://users.apex2000.net/whardie/.
     
  18. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    Sweet.... I got mine to the point tonight that I can turn the key and it'll turn over but I still need some questions answered about the 96 computer before I start it. I pick a 96 computer up for $65 and it has 5 connectors, my 99 computer only has 4. I need to figure out what the 5 connector is(Smalll square one in the middle any ideas?). I problably could have started it tonight but didn't want to chance it until I know about that connector. As for the the AC, I talk to a shop and they can take the stock vortec line and put new rubber on it with the 87 ends. I didn't get a price but thay were like it's no big deal. I have the 99 cruise control box and the inputs to it are exactly the same as the 87(set/acel, coast etc.) I think I can use the 87 turn signal wand and wire it into the 99 cruise and be fine. But I still need to do research on this.

    ok......25k for a vortec swap... YIKES!!!!!!! I could quit my day job and do this!! Wanna come out to Az and start a shop? Another random thought, I just took my 5k piece o crap and made it worth 25k /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif If I didn't have to do all the research and I could work on it 40-50 hours a week I don't think it would take more then a 2-3 weeks to do the swap. The biggest issue I run into is finding the info to complete the swap.

    Mike
     
  19. marine_enlisted

    marine_enlisted 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    My computer has the same little plug in the middle. And I filled it with black rtv. There is nothing plugged into it. I'm not positive , but I think that was for the tranny harness to plug into. I know what you mean about no info, I could only find info from people who put them into land cruisers and one guy who put one in a s-10. On the cruise control, I was thinking about using the '96-'99 control box too. I can't find any schematics for the newer trucks. Have you found any ? I had thought about starting to mod factory harnesses into stand alone for our trucks. I work on avionics on helicopters, we have all the equip for this. Need to part out my burb first, maybe that will be the next project /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/usaflag.gif
     
  20. 87GMCJimmy

    87GMCJimmy 1/2 ton status

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    Re: Forget the LT1, I BOUGHT a \'98 Vortec 350

    That's what I wanted to hear! I should have it started today/tommorow!!! /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif /forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/pimp1.gif

    I have helms manual for the a 99 suburban and it has the complete schematic for the cruise. When I get a chance I'll scan it in for you.

    Mike
     

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